ABT & Segerstrom Center for the Arts To Launch New Dance School

[Costa Mesa, CA] – Expanding their 27-year relationship, Segerstrom Center for the Arts and American Ballet Theatre announce the creation of the American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School on the Segerstrom Center campus in Costa Mesa, CA. The combined resources of American Ballet Theatre, America’s National Ballet Company and Segerstrom Center, one of the world’s leading presenters of dance, will offer unrivaled opportunities for training and nurturing future generations of dancers and dance audiences as well as furthering the development and evolution of dance. The school carries the name of Orange County philanthropist William J. Gillespie, who has been a board member of ABT since 1999 and an enthusiastic and generous donor to the Center for much of the institution’s history.

The ABT Gillespie School will open in September 2015 and is operated jointly by Segerstrom Center for the Arts and American Ballet Theatre. Alaine Haubert has been appointed Principal of the ABT Gillespie School at Segerstrom Center. A former dancer and ballet mistress with ABT and noted dance teacher and coach, Haubert will work with ABT Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie and Melissa Bowman, Director of the Children’s Division of the ABT Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in New York. All classes will be taught by teachers who are certified in ABT’s highly respected National Training Curriculum, will feature live accompaniment and will be held in Segerstrom Center’s dance studios which have been used for rehearsals by all of the world’s leading international ballet companies.

As part of its commitment to the community, Segerstrom Center for the Arts is pleased to offer a limited number of scholarships to the 36-week program as well as offer a series of free classes for the community throughout the year as part of the ABT Gillespie School. Dwyer said, “The Center is committed to making sure that our education programs, including the ABT William J. Gillespie School, are available to as many children as possible from communities across Orange County. We look forward to engaging as many people as possible through our community classes and our scholarship programs.” Scholarships will be available on a limited basis; an application form will be available along with the enrollment materials at SCFTA.org/ABTGillespieSchool. The schedule of free community classes will be available at a later date.

Beyond the professional training that they will receive, students in the ABT Gillespie School will be offered many additional opportunities to enrich their ballet studies: priority opportunities to audition to appear in ABT performances at the Center, including the March 2015 world premiere of Alexei Ratmansky’s new production of The Sleeping Beauty and the December 2015 Center premiere of Ratmansky’s The Nutcracker, as well as participation in the ABT Summer Intensive, master classes, meet-and-greets with visiting companies, backstage tours and special ticket offers for dance performances at the Center

For more information about the ABT William J. Gillespie School at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, to enroll or to learn more about the classes and scholarship program, visit SCFTA.org/ABTGillespieSchool, call (714) 556-2122 ext. 4100 or e-mail ABTGillespieSchool@SCFTA.org.

[Photo: Segerstrom Center – American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School – by Rosalie O’Connor.]


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